DAILY WATCH | Satan's Rebellion with Herbert W. Armstrong

Satan’s Rebellion | The World Tomorrow with Herbert W. Armstrong

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REALITY CHECK- Different Churches?

” The Worldwide Church of God presents Herbert W. Armstrong” were the beginning words announced by Art Gilmore every week on the World Tomorrow Television and Radio programs, produced by the Worldwide Church of God and heard by MILLIONS. But what happened to that Church? Herbert W. Armstrong incorporated a corporation in the state of California, calling it “THE WORLDWIDE CHURCH OF GOD, INCORPORATED” in the late 1960’s. The reason this corporation was formed, was for the BENEFIT of the WORLDWIDE CHURCH OF GOD, an already established unincorporated body of believers. The PURPOSE for this corporation, was for the ability to handle and transfer large amounts of monies, and property for the WORK of the Worldwide Church of God. State law requires such. And in order for the Worldwide Church of God to do a INTERNATIONAL scope work, it had need of a corporation and facilities. But whatever happened to this Worldwide Church of God? There were THOUSANDS OF MEMBERS supporting the various corporate entities under Herbert W. Armstrong. The organizations and corporate entities disappeared. What happened to the Church that funded them? Today, we see many “Church of God organizations”. Those of us here at wwcg-archives.com do not endorse them, and we are not affiliated with any of them. To us they are a DIFFERENT CHURCH- alien to Herbert W. Armstrong and the Church he was a member of- The Worldwide Church of God. They may differ in their various presentations, but the bottom line is they are a DIFFERENT CHURCH altogether, although many of their members once were members of the Worldwide Church of God. They have a right to exist in this world, to believe what they want to believe. God gave every man and woman a free will. We hold no ill will towards them in their ventures. However, these different churches and organizations are teaching that the Worldwide Church of God is gone, and that God has forsaken His Church, and now Jesus Christ is leading their church and organization. They have targeted the membership of the Worldwide Church of God, and through their organizational efforts are scattering the people of God more and more. The Worldwide Church of God still exists. We are UN-incorporated, just as we always have been. But the damage caused by these various organization against the Worldwide Church of God, by telling their members that it is no more, in an attempt to gain them as members of a DIFFERENT CHURCH is being addressed by those of us at wwcg-archives.com .


Philadelphia Church of God   This ORGANIZATION out of Oklahoma claims that the Worldwide Church of God is no more and defunct, and that the Worldwide Church of God’s mantle of leadership went to their organization and that their organization and Church is continuing the legacy and work of Herbert W. Armstrong. This organization was started by Gerald Flurry in 1989 when Gerald Flurry was removed from the WCG INC organization by Joseph Tkach Sr, when he and John Amos disagreed with what Tkach was doing and was sending all of the ministry a booklet discussing how Tkach Sr. was wrong. So they started a different organization, with them listed as the leadership, naming their Church “the Philadelphia Church of God”. When WCG INC, sued PCG INC for copyright infringement and damages, the judge had to correct an important aspect. Both the WCG INC, and PCG INC, wanted “Exclusive rights and usage” to Mr. Armstrong’s books. The judge stated that WCG INC did not have “exclusive rights and use” to the discontinued publications that were originally given freely to the public. He also stated that the PCG did not have “exclusive rights and use” to these publications as well, and that “fair use” did not give them the right to STEAL books from the copyright holder. The WCG INC organization did not want the books kept in circulation in the general public, and was using the court case to establish their alleged “exclusive rights and usage”, but they were DENIED this by the courts. The PCG INC organization claimed “fair use” of the publications, while changing the contact information in the writings to direct people to the PCG INC organization. They were using the courts to prove the WCG had no interest in the publications, and were using that as the premise to urge the courts to give them “exclusive rights and usage”. They were denied this by the courts. What was determined, was that the WCG INC could not stop the circulation and distribution of ALREADY circulated publications. The realm of copyright and trademark was extended into the public realm, and therefore is public domain. The courts determined however, the PCG INC had caused financial damages to the WCG INC. The courts then went into the damages hearing,. However, both parties: “WCG INC” and “PCG INC”, settled out of court in a mutual agreement. WCG INC made an agreement with PCG INC, that for a determined amount of money, the PCG INC could print “their versions”, and that the WCG INC would no longer pursue them legally. Once the PCG INC agreed and carried out this agreement, they went to change Mr. Armstrong’s writings. Certain things Mr. Armstrong taught, the PCG INC organization and church does not agree with, and therefore they changed Mr. Armstrong’s writings to reflect the PCG INC’s beliefs. The PCG INC, is an organization of a DIFFERENT CHURCH. Their organization was not incorporated for the benefit of the Worldwide Church of God, but for the Philadelphia Church of God. And their incorporation was for the purpose of the Philadelphia Church of God’s work. Although they use Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong in name and face, in all of their publications and names of their college and buildings, their Church is NOT the Church Mr. Armstrong was a member of. The books they print of Herbert W. Armstrong are changed to fit their set of doctrines and dogmas. They have many doctrines and teachings that Herbert W. Armstrong and the Worldwide Church of God holds as abominations, and heresies.

The Living Church of God

Living Church of God International This Organization out of North Carolina, claims that the Worldwide Church of God is no more and defunct, and that the mantle of leadership continued over to them in their organization, and that they are continuing the work that was done through Herbert W. Armstrong. The Living Church of God INC organization was started by Roderick C Meredith, after his previous organization “Global Church of God” was shut down due to a power struggle with other ministers. Global, was an organization that was started in 1991 for the benefit of “The Global Church of God”. This was incorporated when Rod Meredith, along with the other Advisory Council of Elders of the Worldwide Church of God, signed over WCG INC and other corporate entities to Joseph Tkach Sr. On May 10, 1986, Ralph Helge started up a “suspended” corporation sole in Colorado. This corporation, which was started by Ralph Helge(acting as secretary to Herbert W. Armstrong) in 1981, was shut down and hid in 1983. This was the year that Mr. Armstrong was alerted to “dummy corporations” which was set up to choose a successor for him at the time of his death. He ordered them to be SHUT DOWN. Ralph Helge, according to state record, only suspended this corporation sole during that time. It was never used until AFTER Mr. Armstrong’s death. In this corporation papers, the Advisory Council of Elders, which Joseph Tkach Sr and Roderick Meredith were members of, was given legal power over the assets and properties of the Worldwide Church of God. In 1991, full power went to Tkach Sr. And a DIFFERENT CHURCH began to run the WCG INC and its supporting corporate entities. What Joseph Tkach Sr. was doing with the organization was not agreeable to Mr. Meredith, and after a heated argument, Joseph Tkach Sr. fired Rod Meredith out of the WCG INC organization. Rod Meredith then gathered other ministers who were loyal to him, out with him, and they incorporated GLOBAL CHURCH OF GOD INC. In this new organization, Rod Meredith and other ministers were in charge. When trouble was increasing for the organization due to internal strife and struggle, Rod Meredith diverted funds into a new organization, and sent letters out to all of the GCG INC’s members. The LIVING CHURCH OF GOD INC was incorporated, and a NEW CHURCH was started. Their doctrines and teachings are different from the Worldwide Church of God and Herbert W. Armstrong.

The Restored Church of God

Restored Church of God This Organization out of Ohio, was started by David C Pack, after an internal battle for power within the “GLOBAL CHURCH OF GOD INC” occurred with Rod Meredith. Pack ventured with Meredith for a short time, but eventually departed from the LIVING CHURCH OF GOD INC to form the RESTORED CHURCH OF GOD INC, a separate organization and a new Church, with himself in charge. He claims to be an apostle, and true successor to Herbert W. Armstrong and that his Church is the successor to the Worldwide Church of God, and claims to be continuing the work that was done through Mr. Armstrong. In his organization, he sends different literature to people based on their relationship with other churches, and their history and impact with the Worldwide Church of God. He claims to have “re-restored” what was restored by Christ through Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong. He has written hundreds of books that have titles similar to Herbert W. Armstrong’s writings. It has been reported that he sends different versions of his books to those who differ in what background they have with Herbert W. Armstrong and the Worldwide Church of God. The RESTORED CHURCH OF GOD is a different organization, incorporated for the benefit of “the Restored Church of God”. However, according to their incorporation papers, upon dissolution of their corporation, all assets, properties and monies are transferred to the Federal Government. This is much like how the Philadelphia Church of God INC was incorporated. Much of what is taught by the Restore Church of God organization, would be considered heresy and abominable by Herbert W. Armstrong and the Worldwide Church of God.


United Church of God This Organization in Ohio, was started in 1995 by ministers who had left the WCG INC organization. In concluding that a NEW organization needed to be incorporated, they asked Joseph Tkach Jr. if the ministers joining the UCG could not lose their paycheck from the WCG INC organization, until they could get financial standing in the newly created organization. Tkach agreed. They incorporated the UNITED CHURCH OF GOD, and the smooth transition between the two organizations went successful. A new Church was created. The ministry organized into a council, and they appoint a rotating presidency. They have adopted a voting system for choosing a president, and the ministry. Doctrines which were taught by Herbert W. Armstrong and the Worldwide Church of God, have been departed from, and the UCG has set up their own doctrinal committee to settle doctrinal issues. This, like all of the other “CHURCH OF GOD ORGANIZATIONS”, is an attempt to claim the keys to “bind and loosen” doctrine. In their Church and Organization, they differ greatly to what was originally taught by Herbert W. Armstrong and the Worldwide Church of God. They write books on subjects and titles similar to Herbert W. Armstrong and the Worldwide Church of God. And they claim to be the successor of the Worldwide Church of God. The UNITED CHURCH OF GOD is a different organization, incorporated for the benefit of “the United Church of God”.
These organizations, and churches, are NOT the Worldwide Church of God. Each of them are building membership, and are funding a work, of a DIFFERENT CHURCH. Their names are foreign to the the writings and publications Herbert W. Armstrong wrote and was apart of, although many men and women of their congregations and ministry were at one time members and ministers of the Worldwide Church of God. Since the Worldwide Church of God today is still UN-incorporated, no longer having an organization to handle large sums of monies and properties for its work, we have to conclude that these CHURCH OF GOD ORGANIZATIONS are organizations started by DIFFERENT CHURCHES, as indicated through their incorporation papers and their existence. This website, wwcg-archives.com, is sponsored and made available by a few members of the existing Worldwide Church of God. We are not associated nor are we affiliated with any organization or different Church. We provide here on this website, the publications of Herbert W. Armstrong and the Worldwide Church of God, seeking to inform our scattered brethren of the truths that were taught, showing them how these DIFFERENT CHURCHES differ from the one and true Church of God, and to admonish them to “HOLD FAST”(Rev. 3:11) to what was taught by Jesus Christ through His chosen apostle Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong. This is done so they may be equipped and able to fulfill the reason and PURPOSE of being called into the Worldwide Church of God.]]>

We Are On The Homestretch




  HERBERT W. ARMSTRONG   President and Pastor     October 23, 1978     Dear Brethren and Co-Workers with Jesus Christ:     GREETINGS! Jesus Christ, the Head of God’s Church, has been moving swiftly to RE-AWAKEN and set His Church back on the track, during the past five months. Then He completely started Ambassador College all over again — throwing out the secularism and immorality that had crept in while Christ’s Apostle was away taking Christ’s Gospel Message into many countries over the world — starting the college once again with only one Freshman class. But again, it is GOD’S COLLEGE!   Jesus Christ moved swiftly, too, to set the RADIO and TELEVISION programs back on GOD’S track, rapidly adding more and more stations.   Next came The PLAIN TRUTH — rooting out the secularism, and making it once again GOD’S magazine — and soon, hopefully, the finest magazine on earth, with multiplied circulation.   And now — He has once again made God’s Feast of Tabernacles truly GOD’S FESTIVAL — the LARGEST ANNUAL CONVENTION OR CONCLAVE ON EARTH!   IT IS MONDAY NIGHT. I have been trying to unwind from preaching the final sermon of the greatest Feast ever!   I ended it, at the Tucson site, with this inspired Scripture: “O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and the knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His JUDGMENTS” (I was just ending the message on the Great White Throne Judgment) — “and His ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? Or who hath been His counsellor? Or who hath first given to Him, and it shall be recompensed unto Him again? For of Him and through Him, and to Him, are all things, to whom be GLORY FOR EVER. Amen” (Rom. 11:33-36).   The ecstasy — the inspiration — the gratitude — the Praise to God for this year’s wonderful Festival still holds me enthralled!   I have heard again and again — from the three sites I attended (St. Petersburg, Big Sandy, and Tucson) people saying the Feast this year was as different from the past few years as day is from night!   The speakers were INSPIRED! They brought dynamic messages, thoroughly covering the MEANING and the PURPOSE of this and God’s other Feasts. I have reports from all sites it was the same every- where. The whole ATMOSPHERE — the spirit of the people — was different — it was the Spirit of God. God’s Church was in need of a SPIRITUAL RE-AWAKENING — and in this Feast of Tabernacles we have made a GOOD START toward a MORE SPIRITUAL, DEVOTED, DEEPLY DEDICATED CHURCH. We are shaking off the Laodicean lukewarmness that was beginning to drug us to sleep.   The sermons were more deeply spiritual — bringing “meat in due season” — bringing inspired messages of the now imminent KINGDOM OF GOD, and its rule over ALL NATIONS for the next thousand years. The ministers preached inspiringly, showing that their hearts were stirred, aroused, to the tremendous MEANING of this Festival. The audience atmosphere was equally re-awakened, inspiring, JOYOUS!   Truly, the living Jesus Christ is setting HIS CHURCH back on the track, in every phase of its great worldwide mission and work.   But, Brethren, this is ONLY A START! If we should rest on our oars now, or let down in our zeal and spiritual dedication, even this wonderful Festival would have been in vain!   We’re OFF TO AN INSPIRED, AROUSED NEW START! Let’s now INCREASE our dedication and deep devotion. GOD’S WORK is FAR FROM FINISHED! The race is not over! But we are now coming in on the HOME STRETCH!   Do not forget that Satan knows this better than we do. It means, to him, that his time is now short. He will AROUSE HIMSELF TO INTENSIFIED GREAT WRATH — AGAINST GOD’S CHURCH — knowing his time is now short. One speaker mentioned today, that while God’s Wrath is against SIN, God has only LOVE for the sinner — but, don’t forget that Satan LOVES SIN, and HATES WITH WHITE-HOT HEAT GOD’S PEOPLE REDEEMED FROM SIN!   The road ahead WILL NOT BE EASY!   When I was a youth in high school I ran the mile, in track. I learned what a RACE really is. Starting out there is a struggle for good position among the other runners. Then it becomes very difficult — one feels almost exhausted, until he gets his “second wind.” It continues to be a struggle, but through the middle of the race he can keep going very well — though it is not easy. But the REAL CHALLENGE is coming in on the HOME STRETCH. That’s when the race becomes most difficult — your strength almost gone — now running on sheer DESPERATE DETERMINATION — the competitor trying to surge ahead of you — you simply have to put into it your last ounce of strength and DETERMINATION to not falter but instead to pick up speed, until you cross the tape. The Apostle Paul used such a race as a comparison to OUR RACE AGAINST SATAN coming in on the home stretch.   “Wherefore, seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him, endured the cross …” (Heb. 12:1-2).   WHAT A LESSON FOR US, RIGHT NOW, in those two verses! Coming in on the home stretch, let us jettison — cast off — all excess weights that might slow us down — or sins which would rob us of the patience to continue — and, with our minds fastened on Jesus, remember that as HE came in on the “home stretch” of His earthly ministry, ENDURED THE CROSS. A runner in a mile race has to ENDURE exhaustion, pain, temptation to give up and quit, and PRESS ON. Jesus endured the cross and the shame of it before human eyes — for at the FINISH LINE was JOY, and He did sit down with God on the heavenly throne. That PRIZE was worth running for!   We have THE SAME PRIZE awaiting us. We shall, when we win, sit down with Christ on His throne! Let us not give up, and HAVE RUN THUS FAR IN VAIN (see Phil. 2:16).   So, from here on in, let us fasten our eyes on JESUS CHRIST — and on the ultimate GOAL, or finishing line. We are running for the GREATEST STAKES in the UNIVERSE! Remember God’s way is LOVE — the GIVING WAY, while Satan’s way is “GETTING.”   Let’s rededicate our lives to GIVING of ourselves! ONLY ONE THING MATTERS from here on in! Lay aside the worldly interests, the pleasures of this life — jettison all those off — and keep our eyes on the ONE GOAL!   We broke records at the Feast in attendance, and in offerings, as well as in SPIRIT. But we have a ONE MILLION DOLLAR BANK LOAN due to be paid back TODAY! I thank and praise God He has made us able to pay it! But we are still about 1 1/2 million dollars behind in the year’s budget — and we are adding new radio and television stations every week — and that INCREASES OUR EXPENDITURES, as well as the number of people reached with Christ’s Gospel.   I am working diligently with The PLAIN TRUTH staff to make it the FINEST MAGAZINE published, and we want to expand our newsstand circulation, (now about 1 million in the U.S. alone — total circulation now close to 3 million copies) — and that all demands INCREASED EXPENDITURES. That’s part of the EFFORT we all must make, coming in on the home stretch to WIN THIS RACE and the PRIZE of eternal salvation in the Kingdom of God!   I now have plans to make The GOOD NEWS into a full color magazine like The PLAIN TRUTH, and let the newsprint tabloid paper go back to the name “Worldwide News” — with Church news, personal items, and things of personal interest — and with The GOOD NFWS becoming a magazine filled with ARTICLES — both devoted to Church interest, Bible teachings, and articles containing SPIRITUAL FOOD.   Wouldn’t you like to see this new jump ahead? If each of us, as an individual, does his part, making sacrifices for the Work of God, you will see this Work of God leap ahead as never before! We must put on an EXTRA BURST OF SPEED COMING IN ON THE HOME STRETCH. For world conditions are now developing to bring on quickly THE GREAT TRIBULATION, and the END of this present evil world!   NOTHING is important now, but GOD’S WORK! Thank you, Brethren and Co-Workers, from the bottom of my heart. As WE are now getting back into the grace of God, He is RESTORING HIS BLESSING which was largely withdrawn during the past ten years! CHRIST will lavish on us HIS blessing, if WE begin to put Him FIRST in our lives!     With deep love, in Jesus’ name,     Herbert W. Armstrong  ]]>

They Ignore God the Father… Do You?  

They Ignore God the Father… Do You?

by Herbert W. Armstrong

page 33 Plain Truth May 1980

  There are two basic common and universal errors in the preaching of the “Gospel” by this world’s “Christianity.”   WHAT ARE THE two most universal errors in the proclaiming of the “Gospel” by the various sects and denominations of traditional Christianity today? 1) They ignore God the Father, and 2), they proclaim a FALSE GOSPEL—in which God the Father is mostly ignored. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the good news that Jesus Christ, as God’s Messenger, brought. In other words, the message GOD THE FATHER sent to mankind by His Son and Messenger (Malachi 3:1) to mankind. Jesus said plainly, “I speak that which I have seen with my Father . . . for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me” (John 8:38, 42). Again, Jesus said, “The words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, He doeth the works” (John 14:10). In the first sermon Peter spoke to gentiles, he said, “The word [Gospel] which God sent. . . preaching peace by Jesus Christ. . .” (Acts 10:36). That message from God the Father was not proclaimed to the world from the middle of the first century, when it was suppressed, until the middle of the 20th century. Then, after going to the United States coast to coast, it began, January 7, 1953, reaching all Europe. What has been proclaimed? MAN’S “gospel” about the Person of the Messenger, but omitting His MESSAGE, which came from God the Father. Now how else do they ignore God the Father? They preach Christ—but Him only. Let me explain something here. There are two WAYS of life: 1) the way of GETTING, receiving, acquiring—the way of SELF-centeredness; and 2) the way of GIVING, of helping, cooperating, sharing, of outflowing LOVE—which is the way of GOD-centeredness. Now how do they of traditional Christianity preach? Assuming that this is the only time of salvation, they plead with people, “RECEIVE Christ”—in other words, “GET,” not “GIVE.” They believe the blood of Jesus—Christ’s death, gives LIFE. But LIFE cannot come from death! Notice Romans 5:10: “For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to GOD [the Father] by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his LIFE.” We are not saved—given eternal life—by Christ’s shed blood—by His death. We are reconciled to GOD THE FATHER by Christ’s death. How is that? The penalty of SIN is death. Sin IS the transgression of God’s LAW (I John 3:4). There is ONE Lawgiver. NOT Jesus, but God the Father! When we sin we are CUT OFF FROM GOD THE FATHER! That is what modern “Christianity” ignores. All have sinned. All have put an impassable WALL between themselves and God the Father. We must be reconciled to God first, for it is HE who has eternal life to give! How may we be reconciled to God the Father? By REAL REPENTANCE. Repentance is toward GOD the Father, and faith is toward Jesus (Acts 20:21). Once we truly REPENT, which means a complete change of ATTITUDE, way of life and purpose, then our faith in Jesus Christ and His shed blood for payment of the penalty of our sins, destroys that impassable WALL between us and GOD the Father—and we then may receive His Holy Spirit—after we have GIVEN our life, through repentance and faith, to Christ, who bought and paid for it by His DEATH. Then our salvation—gift of eternal life—is made possible by Christ’s RESURRECTION—by His LIFE! But this world’s Christianity thinks it may receive eternal life from Jesus’ DEATH, and from Jesus ALONE—leaving out the FATHER. And once converted—changed—what then? We must KEEP reconciled to GOD by obedience to His Law. If we make a slip, or fall down along the way, then IF we “confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins” (I John 1:9). Of course, traditional Christianity has lost sight of GOD’S LAW and of what constitutes SIN. They ignore the fact we must be first reconciled to God THE FATHER! None can come to Jesus for eternal salvation, except God the Father first draws him! Jesus said plainly in John 6:44: “NO MAN CAN come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him.” It is God the Father who decides whom He shall call. It is God the Father from whom we have cut ourselves off by transgressing His Law. It is the Father who has the Holy Spirit to give. The sinner must first of all, upon being called, REPENT—change his mind and attitude in regard to sin, and obedience to God’s WAY OF LIFE! How does God call one? He DRAWS one (John 6:44) by the magnetic POWER of His Holy Spirit, working externally from outside one. Through His Spirit, God convicts one. On the very day Christ founded the Church, Peter had preached a Spirit-inspired sermon. Three thousand there were “pricked in their heart”—”they were cut to the heart” (Revised Standard Version); “it went straight to their hearts” (Moffatt translation). In other words their whole minds and attitudes were convicted of guilt and changed, ready for repentance—a COMPLETE CHANGE to GOD’S WAY OF LIFE. This led them to repentance TOWARD GOD THE FATHER. Then they BELIEVED on Jesus Christ, were baptized, and God the Father then gave them His HOLY SPIRIT! Now WHAT GOSPEL did Jesus bring from God the Father? What was the MESSAGE the Father sent to mankind by Jesus? In Mark 1:1, 14, 15, we read: “The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ. . . after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee preaching the gospel of the KINGDOM OF GOD, And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the KINGDOM OF GOD is at hand: repent ye, and believe the Gospel.” Jesus proclaimed the GOVERNMENT OF GOD, based on the LAW OF GOD, to rule the whole earth, at Christ’s Second Coming—now SOON! The KINGDOM OF GOD is the divine born FAMILY OF GOD, of which God the FATHER is Father of the entire Family. Today, by leaving God the Father out of their message, the churches of traditional Christianity do not know that a real and true Christian may be, in this life, only BEGOTTEN by receiving the Holy Spirit—which is the begettal of God-life—and may be BORN a full GOD BEING, immortal, composed of Spirit, at the resurrection of the just—at Christ’s coming! In a word, by ignoring God the Father, they make the life, Gospel, death and resurrection of JESUS CHRIST utterly MEANINGLESS! Let us be sure we have God the Father and the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ BOTH in the picture, as they, themselves, have placed themselves! ]]>

Unconditional Surrender!  

Unconditional Surrender!   Will God accept you and me “just as we are”? How, exactly, does God expect us to respond to His workings in our lives?   By Jerold W. Aust The Good News, August 1985   On August 10, 1945, the surrender of Japan brought World War II to an end. After an atomic bomb was dropped on each of the Japanese industrial cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan had had enough. The nation sued for peace through the Swiss government, stating that the terms of the Potsdam ultimatum would be accepted if Japan’s political structure could be preserved. On August 11, the United States transmitted a reply stating: “From the moment of surrender the authority of the Emperor and the Japanese Government to rule the state shall be subject to the Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers, who will take such steps as he deems proper to effectuate the surrender terms.” On August 15, 1945, Emperor Hirohito of Japan made a dramatic broadcast, announcing the surrender to his people. It was unconditional surrender subject to the victor’s dictates. Unconditional surrender — a complete capitulation signaling the end of hostilities, a total release of all rights, claims and privileges. It was this type of surrender that concluded the greatest war in human history. And it is exactly this type of surrender that God demands of true Christians! Do you realize what God requires from us? Complete capitulation — the end of all our hostilities toward God’s authority and His way of life — total release of all rights and claims to our former, self-serving ways — absolute acceptance of all God’s terms. However, instead of captivity and an uncertain future, which result from surrender in human wars, our surrender to God produces unlimited short-term and long-term blessings!   [Photo CaptionPeace treaty ceremony in Manila Bay. Japan’s surrender brought World War II to an end. God demands unconditional surrender — the end of all our hostilities against Him.]   Two kinds of captivity   Humanity grows up in spiritual captivity, under an insidious yoke of bondage to sin and the death penalty sin incurs (Romans 6:23, Galatians 5:1). Humanity, in a very real sense, is at war against God and God’s way! Humanity, though, does not know this, being blinded to its condition by Satan the devil, “who deceives the whole world” (Revelation 12:9). We all grew up in captivity to the works of the flesh, expressing the nature of Satan (Galatians 5:19-21). But God, according to His particular timetable, has guaranteed release for humanity from subjugation, beginning with a very few people at this time (Romans 5:6, II Corinthians 6:2, Isaiah 49:8). And one of God’s major conditions for deliverance from Satan is unconditional surrender to Him. We actually come into captivity to God. We are to replace Satan’s yoke of bondage with the easy “yoke” of Jesus Christ. God requires us to accept His way — the way that produces joy and every desirable blessing. God actually forces us to be happy. This “yoke” is indeed agreeable!   “Just as I am”?   Some will remember the old hymn that intones, “Just as I am, without one plea.” The implication is that Jesus did it all, so there is nothing required from us. What heinous lies Satan foists on a deceived mankind! There is much we must do (I John 2:3-6). Our walk with God requires daily, willing obedience to His life-giving laws. Rebellion or reluctance to wholeheartedly follow God is contrary to the submission required of us (I Samuel 15:23). God commands that we expunge the wrong ways of this world — those ways contrary to God’s laws — the ways that produce death — from our thoughts and actions (II Corinthians 6:14-18).   The first steps   Jesus clearly explained to His disciples that it was His Father’s sole prerogative to reveal Himself to whomsoever He will (John 6:44). And God is only revealing Himself to a small group at this time. We — you and I — did not “find” the only true God (Ecclesiastes 3:11). God found us! Within this context of our Father drawing us to Him, we heard God’s call through His modern-day work through Herbert W. Armstrong, either by way of radio, television or the printed word. Further, we began to respond to the instruction to obey such basic commands of God as observing the Sabbath and the annual Holy Days, eating clean meats and keeping all 10 of God’s basic commandments (Ephesians 2:10, Matthew 19:17). However, this does not mean we immediately or automatically come into complete accord with our patient and merciful Maker. To accomplish this requires experience and time — a total commitment to His laws, His principles and His ways and a desire to inculcate His will, His thoughts and conduct. This is all part of how we come to unconditionally surrender to our mighty Majesty on high!   Is any choice involved?   However, would God expect you and me to do all this unthinkingly, as automatons, without minds of our own? No! After we are called by God and start to follow His way, we must continue throughout life to choose to follow Him, to do exactly as His Word dictates. Remember, we have no choice what we obey — that is preserved in the Word of God, with Christ as the example of how to live the perfect way (John 12:49). Our choice is whether we obey God’s dictates. Don’t be deceived! And, as Mr. Armstrong has pointed out, the Bible does not contain a “Thou shalt” or a “Thou shalt not” for every single area of life in which we might find ourselves. It is in these areas that we learn how to apply the spirit of God’s law — the give way — to obey God and continue developing His character. Satan would have you and me think that God is unfair not to let us find out for ourselves which is the right or wrong way to go. But God’s laws keep us on the right path, off the “way which seems right” but ends only in death (Proverbs 14:12, 16:25).   Unconditional surrender — the benefits   God’s holy laws are designed to bless those obedient to them (Deuteronomy 30:19-20, Psalm 119:143, 165). We have grown up in Satan’s world (II Corinthians 4:4), held captive by the lusts of our flesh (Ephesians 2:1-3). But God, through Jesus Christ’s sacrifice, liberates us from our death-dealing sins (John 8:31-32, James 1:25). He gives us His Holy Spirit — His own mind and power — so that we can live His way and reap the benefits. God has given us several forms of encouragement to inspire us to unconditional surrender — spiritual atomic bombs, if you will. Two most positive ones include the blessings in this physical life that come from obeying God’s laws (and that precede the gift of eternal, spirit life), and the positive example of Jesus Christ Himself, who never sinned. There is also a persuasive element that discourages us from reverting to our former ways: the prophesied lake of fire that one day will engulf this earth and purge it of anything left that opposes God (II Peter 3:7, 10). In that lake of fire the incorrigible — those who once knew the truth but discarded it, severing themselves from God by rejecting His Holy Spirit, in effect again declaring war against God — will be blotted out of existence (Hebrews 6:4-8, Revelation 20:14-15, Hebrews 10:27). God’s great desire is to have us live forever. His gift of eternal life, however, demands the surrender of our wills to His. We must place God ahead of everything else (Luke 14:26). For those who would enjoy favor with God now, who would be under His protection in the evil days ahead and eventually would experience life eternal, unconditional surrender to our great, loving and merciful God is the only answer: “Whoever of you does not forsake all that he has cannot be My disciple” (Luke 14:33). “And they [true Christians] overcame him [Satan] by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death” (Revelation 12:11). That epitomizes unconditional surrender! ]]>

GRACE – Do You Really Understand It?  

Do You Really Understand It?   The word grace is part of every Christian’s vocabulary, yet for many the subject is confusing. Let’s let God’s Word give us a clear understanding.   By Douglas G. Peitz The Good News, January 1985   Few people — even professing Christians! — really understand what grace is. And rather than searching the Bible for God’s teaching on the subject, they get bogged down in debate over whether grace does away with God’s law. Is grace, as many assume, merely unmerited pardon for sin — or is it much more? Why do we need grace, if we do? Does grace abrogate the need to keep God’s commandments? We need to know! Let’s go to the Bible and let God’s Word answer.   Grace in the New Testament   The New Testament Greek word translated “grace” is charis. Charis was a widely used word in the first century; its primary meaning is “that which gives pleasure or delight.” But, like the English word grace, charis held a variety of associated meanings not dealing with the grace of God toward man. Before we see what God’s grace is, let’s first look at these other uses. Luke, in describing Jesus’ childhood development, wrote, “And the Child grew and became strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace of God was upon Him” (Luke 2:40). In other words, God was well pleased with Jesus Christ. Obviously, charis is not used to mean unmerited pardon for sin in this case, since Jesus was without sin (Hebrews 4:15, II Corinthians 5:21). In the book of Acts, Luke uses charis to express kindness, favor or goodwill toward another. God gave Joseph “favor [charis] and wisdom in the presence of Pharaoh, king of Egypt” (Acts 7:10). Also, the Church was given favor, or charis, with the people around Jerusalem (Acts 2:46-47). Charis can also express thankfulness. Paul said, “But thanks [charis] be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (I Corinthians 15:57). Finally, charis can be used to denote a gift or favor done as an act of goodwill: “Then the high priest and the chief men of the Jews informed him [Festus] against Paul; and they petitioned him, asking a favor [charis] against him, that he would summon him to Jerusalem — while they lay in ambush along the road to kill him” (Acts 25:2-3).   God’s grace   Charis was used by the Greek world in all the above senses. But the New Testament writers applied this word in a new sense to describe what God is doing for humanity. They realized that God’s plan of salvation is so kind, so merciful, so unmerited and so thankworthy that it is the ultimate charis! God’s purpose is to reproduce Himself. Those whom God calls (John 6:44) are given the chance to repent and accept Jesus Christ’s sacrifice. Then, upon being baptized, they are given God’s Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38), which enables them to develop godly character and ultimately be born into the very Family of God (I John 3:1-2). Charis is an all-encompassing word for this whole process of conversion that is being accomplished by God’s power.   Why grace is necessary   Why is grace essential to salvation (Ephesians 2:8)? And why are all efforts to earn salvation futile (verse 9)? There are two reasons. First, “all have sinned” (Romans 3:23) — sin being the transgression of God’s law (I John 3:4) — and “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). We have all earned the death penalty. And just as any government today realizes, the violation of law cannot go unpunished, or anarchy would ensue. No, a penalty must be paid, regardless of how sorry the criminal is or how good he promises to be in the future. Similarly, our regret and subsequent good behavior can never pay the penalty for sin, because the penalty is death. And God’s laws are enforced. God does not compromise with sin by allowing a way of life that leads to unhappiness, misery and death to go unpunished. The penalty for our sins must be paid. Second, not only have we sinned, but man by himself is incapable of overcoming sin. Paul said in Romans 8:7, “The carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be.” Our best efforts are futile unless God gives us the help we need. God’s grace toward us begins when God begins calling us. Unless God opens our minds, we cannot understand His purpose (John 6:44). Paul commented, “God … called me through His grace” (Galatians 1:15). The very fact that you can understand the truths of God as revealed in the Bible is because of God’s grace. But being called is just the beginning of grace. The process of conversion requires more than understanding. It requires change, or repentance. We must freely choose to obey God — and unless God shows us what to repent of and the importance of obeying Him, we cannot repent. “The goodness of God leads you to repentance,” Paul explained in Romans 2:4. But being sorry for sinning, and changing, is not enough. So God’s grace continues with Jesus Christ’s sacrifice: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God set forth to be a propitiation [an atoning sacrifice] by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness” (Romans 3:23-25). Jesus Christ paid the penalty of sin, which is death, in our stead. Christ’s sacrifice is the supreme expression of divine grace. It is totally unmerited (Romans 5:6-8). Christ’s sacrifice frees us from the penalty of breaking God’s law. But it does not do away with the law! Think: Would God now allow the violation of laws that necessitated the death of His own Son? Of course not. Grace does not nullify God’s law. Rather, grace is necessary because God’s law is eternally binding. As Paul explained: “Shall we continue in sin [the transgression of God’s law — John 3:4] that grace may abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?” (Romans 6:1-2) Continuing in sin would mock Jesus Christ’s supreme sacrifice.   Unmerited but not unconditional   Here is where many misunderstand. Grace is unmerited but it is not unconditional. There are two conditions: repentance and faith (Mark 1:5, Acts 2:38). Although we can never earn salvation, God does set certain requirements for receiving His grace. Let’s understand. Once God, by His grace, reveals to us the need to repent and humbly accept Jesus Christ’s sacrifice as payment for our sins, we must do our part. We must voluntarily yield ourselves to God, admitting where we have been wrong, and make the necessary changes. Then we must be baptized as an outward expression of our repentance and faith (Romans 6:3-6). Don’t misunderstand — God’s grace is free and unmerited, but if we refuse to change our lives — to obey God — He is under no obligation to bestow His grace upon us. God will not allow Christ’s sacrifice and His grace to be taken lightly. The process continues. Peter tells us we must now “grow in grace” (II Peter 3:18, Authorized Version). Grace is unmerited pardon for sin, but it is much more. For if grace were merely the unmerited forgiveness of sin, how could we grow in grace except by sinning more? No, we must, while coming under God’s grace, overcome sin. If you are truly under God’s grace, you will be striving diligently to obey God’s commandments. Paul said: “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works” (Titus 2:11-14). We are to develop godly character by growing and overcoming in order that we can ultimately be born into the very Family of God. But we cannot do this alone (Matthew 19:25-26). We need God’s Spirit. And His Spirit, by His grace toward us, is a gift (Acts 10:45, 11:17). God’s Spirit gives us the power we need to develop character. But we must work at it. Paul said, “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me” (I Corinthians 15:10). To grow in grace is to overcome sin through coupling God’s Spirit with our own efforts. Without God’s help, overcoming sin would be impossible. Finally, after we have developed godly character through God’s Spirit, one final act of grace is bestowed upon us — eternal life! We deserved death, but will receive life eternal. As Paul said, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23). The world is deceived into believing in a shallow, limited concept of God’s grace. True grace is more than the forgiveness of sin; it is the total process of salvation. Peter summed it up beautifully: “But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen…. I have written to you briefly, exhorting and testifying that this is the true grace of God in which you stand” (I Peter 5:10-12). ]]>

Is Jesus God?

Is Jesus God?

by Herbert W. Armstrong

page 1 Good News December 1982

  What is the REAL ANSWER? Is Jesus God? Is He the same as Jehovah? Is there more than one God? Here you will find GOD’S answer—from His own Word—as revealed in YOUR BIBLE.     STARTLING as it may seem, there is great confusion today among religious leaders concerning the true nature and office of Jesus Christ—the Savior of the world. You need not be in doubt! The Bible was divinely inspired to impart TRUTH to those who seek it with honest hearts and minds. But even this all-important subject has become jumbled in today’s troubled and chaotic world. Is Jesus God? Jesus Christ came to pay the penalty for sin in our stead. He gave of Himself, that we might be reconciled to God. How was this made possible? First, if Jesus had been only human, His death could have paid the penalty for but one other human who had incurred that penalty by transgression of God’s spiritual law (Rom. 6:23). Since God the Father created all things by Jesus Christ (Eph. 3:9), and since all things, including man, were made by Jesus Christ, He is our Maker and therefore God, and His life that He gave was of greater value than the sum total of all human beings. For we read: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made” (John 1:1-3). “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth; we have beheld his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father” (verse 14, Revised Standard Version). Also, “He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world knew him not” (verse 10, RSV). Compare these scriptures with I Corinthians 8:6 and Colossians 1:12-19. Life alone can beget life. This is the absolute law of biogenesis. Since eternal life is the GIFT of God (John 3:16), only a GOD possessing immortality could give it. If Jesus were only human, we could not receive eternal life through Him and He could not be our Savior. Man does not have eternal life inherent in himself. But, as God “the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself.” And: “God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life” (John 5:26, I John 5:11-12). He was also human On the other hand, Jesus was also human. Since it is human life that has transgressed God’s law, the law claims human life as its penalty. Contrary to popular present-day teaching, the Word of God states that the wages —the penalty—of sin is DEATH—not eternal life in a so-called hell fire (Rom. 6:23). When we sin, we break God’s perfect spiritual law, “for sin is the transgression of the law” (I John 3:4). The penalty for this sin is death. The penalty must be paid. God the Father will not compromise. It must be paid by man. Therefore, Jesus, who is and was God, who has always existed (John 1:1-2), was actually made flesh (verse 14). He, who was God, actually became human flesh because I John 4:2-3 (RSV) states, “By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit which confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit which does not confess Jesus is not of God.” He was conceived in and born of the human virgin, Mary. “Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child of the Holy Spirit” (Matt. 1:18, RSV). He was made not only flesh, but human flesh and blood. Notice Hebrews 2:14: “Since then the children are sharers in blood and flesh, himself also in like manner partook of the same” (Ivan Panin translation). Jesus called Himself the Son of MAN repeatedly, and also the Son of God. Matthew wrote: “Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, ‘Who do men say that the Son of man is?’ And they said, ‘Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.’ He said to them, ‘But who do you say that I am?’ Simon Peter replied, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.’ And Jesus answered him, ‘Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jona! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven’ ” (Matt. 16:13-17, RSV). Jesus, in nature, is equal with God—”Jesus: who, existing in God’s form, counted not the being on an equality with God ought to be grasped at, but emptied himself . . . being made in likeness of men” (Phil. 2:6, Panin translation). He is called God in Titus 2:10, 13. Therefore He is God. The Bible contains so much on these points that the above is a mere fragment of the evidence. Yes, Jesus is also “Jehovah,” although this word is a mistranslation used in the American Standard Version. The original name, in the Hebrew, contained the consonants YHVH. In writing in Hebrew, vowels were omitted, supplied only in speaking. Thus the precise pronunciation of the name is not definitely known, but today it is commonly assumed to be Yahveh or Yahweh. The meaning, in English, is “THE ETERNAL” or “THE EVER-LIVING” or the “SELF-EXISTENT.” It is commonly supposed that Yahveh or, as commonly called, “Jehovah” or, as in the Authorized Version, “The LORD” of the Old Testament was God the FATHER of Jesus Christ. This is a flagrant error! Yahveh was the God of Israel, the only One of the Godhead known to ancient Israel. When He came in human flesh they did not recognize Him. “He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not” (John 1:10). Neither did they know God the Father (Matt. 11:27, Luke 10:22, Panin). “No one knoweth . . . who the Father is, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son willeth to REVEAL him.” In Genesis 1, the Hebrew name translated “God” is Elohim. This is a uniplural name, such as church or family. A church or a family consists of more than one person, yet is one church, or one family. In this same sense Elohim—the God Kingdom— includes both God the Father and Yahveh, who was the Logos or the WORD of God, and also their Spirit emanating from them, the Holy Spirit, the LIFE, CHARACTER and POWER of God. Jesus, in praying for the welfare of the Church prayed that its many members might “be ONE as we are one” (John 17:11, 21, Moffatt translation). The Church is ONE body, yet composed of many members (I Cor. 12:12). A husband and wife are ONE FLESH, yet two persons. The word God has two meanings—the God Kingdom or the God Family, AND the persons composing that Kingdom or Family. Christ and the Father are ONE God, not two Gods —one Elohim. That is why Elohim said, “Let us make man in OUR image” (Gen. 1:26). Yahveh was the “WORD” or Spokesman of the Godhead—its second member. As soon as God began to SPEAK to man, it was always Yahveh who spoke (translated “LORD” in the Authorized and “Jehovah” in the American Standard Version—see Genesis 2:16, 18 and Exodus 20:2). Almost always it is Yahveh in the original Hebrew—the “WORD” who was made flesh. The proof of this is a long study involving hundreds of passages. As a fragment of the evidence, compare Isaiah 8:13-14 with I Peter 2:7-8. Isaiah said, “The LORD of hosts”—YHVH— shall be “a stone of stumbling” and “a rock of offence.” Peter said, in quoting this text in reference to Christ, He is “a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence.” Jesus is the LORD —the Eternal of the Old Testament. Now compare Isaiah 40:3 with Matthew 3:3 and Mark 1:3. John prepared the way before Yahveh (Isa. 40:3) who was CHRIST (Mark 1:14-15). In Revelation 1:17 we read: “When I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last.” And in verse 8, “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.” Again Revelation 22:13, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end” (RSV). Study also Revelation 22:16 for proof it was Jesus speaking. Jesus Christ calls Himself the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. Now compare these texts with Isaiah 44:6: “Thus says the LORD, the King of Israel and his Redeemer, the LORD of hosts: ‘I am the first and I am the last; besides me there is no god’ ” (RSV). Now turn to Isaiah 48:11-12, RSV. “For my own sake, for my own sake, I do it, for how should my name be profaned? My glory I will not give to another. ‘Hearken to me, O Jacob, and Israel, whom I called! I am He, I am the first, and I am the last.’ ” Verses 17-18 show it was Yahveh speaking. And also in Isaiah 41:4, RSV: “Who has performed and done this, calling the generations from the beginning? I, the LORD, the first, and with the last; I am He.” All of these scriptures show that Yahveh is the first and last. Christ is the Yahveh of the Old Testament. Christ is the ROCK—the God of the Old Testament In I Corinthians 10:4, the “Rock” of the Old Testament is called Christ: “For they drank from the supernatural Rock which followed them, and the Rock was Christ” (verse 4, RSV). Notice also II Samuel 22:2-3, RSV: “He said, ‘The LORD [Yahveh] is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold and my refuge, my savior; thou savest me from violence.’ ” See also verse 32. In Psalm 18:1-2, this same “ROCK” is Yahveh. When Moses was talking to Yahveh, and asked Him His name (Ex. 3:4-5, 13), He answered that His name was “I AM” (verses 6, 14) and Yahveh—the Eternal One (verse 15). See also Exodus 6:2-3. In John 18:5-8, as soon as Jesus identified Himself to the mob led by Judas as “I AM” (the “he” in italics is added without inspiration, and was not in the original), they went backward and fell to the ground. Again in John 8:56-58, Jesus called Himself “I AM.” For we read, “Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am” (verse 58). The person of the Godhead who is our REDEEMER is Jesus Christ. John 4:42, RSV, contains this: “They said to the woman, ‘It is no longer because of your words that we believe, for we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this is indeed the SAVIOR of the world.’ ” “But our commonwealth is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Phil. 3:20, RSV). Read also Titus 2:10-14, Luke 1:68-69. That Jesus, the Savior, is Yahveh. See Isaiah 49:26 and 60:16, where He—Yahveh—is also “the mighty One of Jacob” (to be OF Jacob means a son or descendant of Jacob)—the mighty One of all Jacob’s children. Also, in Isaiah 48:17, Yahveh is called the Redeemer, and “the Holy One of Israel”—the One of Israel who is holy! The same is expressed in Isaiah 43:14: “Thus saith the Lord, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel.” Also note the next verse (15): Yahveh is Israel’s Holy One, Creator of Israel, Israel’s King. Now notice in Acts 3:14-15 that the Christ who was denied was the same “HOLY ONE”—Yahveh! “But ye denied the Holy and Righteous One . . . the Prince of life” (Panin). See also Acts 2:27 and Mark 1:24. Christ was David’s shepherd Who was David’s shepherd (Ps. 23:1)? In John 10:11, Jesus said He was the Shepherd. Open your Bible also to Hebrews 13:20, RSV: “Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep.” Compare this text with I Peter 2:25, RSV, which says, “For you were straying like sheep, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls.” We also read: “Tend the flock of God that is your charge, not by constraint but willingly, not for shameful gain but eagerly, not as domineering over those in your charge but being examples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd is manifested you will obtain the unfading crown of glory” (I Pet. 5:2-4, RSV). It is JESUS CHRIST who is coming again in person as KING of kings to rule, and to RESTORE. In Revelation 19:13-15, RSV, John writes: “He is clad in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God. . . . From his mouth issues a sharp sword with which to smite the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron; he will tread the wine press of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty.” And again John writes, “They will make war on the Lamb, and the Lamb [Christ] will conquer them, for he is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those with him are called and chosen and faithful” (Rev. 17:14, RSV). The great Shepherd who is coming to RULE as King of kings is Yahveh. “And ye my flock, the flock of my pasture, are men, and I am your God, saith the Lord God”—Yahveh or Christ! See Ezekiel 34:11, 30-31. Now notice Isaiah 2:1-4 and Micah 4:1-4. “It shall come to pass . . . that the mountain [Kingdom] of the Lord’s [Yahveh’s] house shall be established in the top of the mountains [kingdoms]” —ruling the world. “And he [Yahveh—Christ] shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people,” and then they shall have PEACE. In almost every Old Testament passage, the LORD Yahveh —the Eternal—is Jesus Christ. Clearly, Jesus is the God of the Old Testament.]]>